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Monday’s Red Sox-Rangers matchups: Aaron Cook vs. Yu Darvish

08.06.12 at 11:57 am ET
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Aaron Cook will try to snap his skid of winless starts when he takes the Fenway Park mound on Monday night in the first of the Red Sox‘ three-game set against the Rangers.

In five starts since a brilliant complete game two-hitter against the Mariners on June 29, Cook hasn’€™t won a game and is 0-4 in those starts with a no-decision sandwiched in. Cook, who is 2-5 with a 5.24 ERA this season, has struggled mightily recently. He has permitted at least six earned runs in each of his last two starts and allowed two home runs in each of his last three starts.

In his last start, Cook only lasted 4 2/3 innings against the Tigers in the first loss of the Red Sox’€™ recent four-game skid. Cook hasn’€™t gone five or more innings in each of his last two starts and has given up 16 hits in his last 8 2/3 innings.

Despite being in the big leagues since 2002, Cook has never faced the Rangers. However, Cook, who was a member of the Rockies for 10 seasons, is familiar with Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre. In 17 plate appearances against Cook, Beltre has six hits ‘€“ all singles ‘€“ with four RBIs.

Cook will match up against Rangers right-hander Yu Darvish, who has similarly never played against the Red Sox in his career.

Since July 1, Darvish (11-7, 4.38 ERA), who was named an All-Star, has struggled similarly to Cook. In his last five starts, Darvish is 1-3 with a 6.82 ERA. His last start may have been his worst of the season, as he gave up six walks and seven earned runs on just four hits in just five innings in a no-decision against the Angels.

Darvish also has struggled massively on the road this season. In his last seven games as a visitor, the Japanese right-hander has lost five of them with a 5.44 ERA.

Despite his recent struggles, Darvish has maintained his label as a strikeout machine. Unlike Cook, who has just four strikeouts this season, Darvish has racked up 145 punchouts — good for fifth best in the American League — and he has recorded at least 10 strikeouts in six starts this season.

Rangers vs. Cook (RHP)

Adrian Beltre (17 plate appearances): .462 BA/.529 OBP/.462 SLG, 4 RBIs, 2 walks, 1 strikeout

Alberto Gonzalez (9): .375/.333/.500, 1 double, 2 RBIs

Mike Napoli (9): .222/.222/.222, 2 RBIs, 2 strikeouts

Roy Oswalt (6): .333/.333/.333, 2 strikeouts

Geovany Soto (5): .200/.200/.200

Josh Hamilton (3): 1.000/1.000/2.000, 1 double, 1 triple

Red Sox vs. Darvish (RHP)

No current Red Sox batters have ever faced Darvish.

Read More: aaron cook, Rangers, Red Sox, Yu Darvish
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